My Escape Room Drama

“This isn’t good,” I mumbled aloud to myself.

I could have yelled it. There was no-one about the place to hear me.

Which was a major part of the problem.

Only where ‘major’ is in impact font, set at 48, all caps, underscored and, for good measure, in red. Like this:

I could add exclamation marks but no one likes a drama queen.

Having taken Miss17 to a specialist meeting on the Sunshine Coast we’d then spent a rather pleasant half hour having brunch and chatting. As kids grow up and their lives become almost as busy as yours, one of the things I enjoy is we can turn a chore into one-on-fun chatty time with the kids.

Which, for our family, always involves food.

“What do you wan to eat?” I’d asked. There aren’t any limits when it’s just the two of us. Japanese, Thai, Chinese, Korean, Italian, Greek. Whatever they want.

“Maccas,” she enthused.

“But,” I said, bringing up the one big issue with this idea, “they don’t have a lot of gluten free.”

“That’s okay,” she said. “I just want fries and a coffee.”

No paternity test required.

Which was all good and dandy, until…

“I need to use the loo,” I said to Miss17. “Back soon.”

The irony of that simple statement.

Fifteen minutes later I was still sitting patiently starring at the black screen of my phone because it had run out of charge and thinking to myself surely someone will need to go pee pee soon.

Eventually I heard the door open.

“Dad?” Miss17 whispered hesitantly through what I can only assume was a thin opening of ‘OMG I hope I don’t get arrested for this’ of the door.

“Grace!” I said joyously. “Grace, there’s no toilet paper. Can you please go let them know so they can bring me some.”

She didn’t answer, which I took as a good sign…for about thirty seconds, at which point I remembered none of my kids can hear me at home when I’m yelling between rooms. There was every chance I’d develop a bunch of grapes before I managed to get out of there.

A minute later the door opened again. I inhaled, ready to beg for assistance when suddenly a hand appeared under the door holding a roll of bum tickets.

“Thank you,” I said.

“Hrk,” came the reply. Followed by, “Hukk, hrrrk,” retreating to the door and out again.

I arrived back at the table grinning from ear to ear.

“Whoever brought me in the dunny roll,” I said quietly but proudly to Miss17, “gagged as they handed it over.”

I knew my daughter would be horrified at me for being so amused by this – and I’m not saying she’s wrong about that – but I also knew she’d find it as amusing as me.

I knew wrong.

Instead of shaking her head from side to side and chastising me in a half dig, she appeared genuinely perplexed at my amusement.

“Oh, come on,” I said mockingly. “This is hilarious and you know it.”

“Yeeeeaaaaah….I’d agree with you except for one thing,” said my daughter. And I have to say the point she made was a sound one, although it also made the whole thing even funnier from where I was/had been sitting. “The person passing you the toilet paper – that was me!”

Raising a family on little more than laughs


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